Independent Contractor with an Agency

  1. Hello Everyone

    I am new to this site and I am so glad to find this type of forum. I am an ICU nurse and have decided to link up with a local agency and work per diem. What was explained to me is that "i would be my own boss" and that every monday i would make out my schedule where i would want to work. I would let the agency know where and which hospital or facility i'd like to work that week.

    I can work as little or as much as possible depending on the need. The rate to do this varies from $38-$42/hr depending upon which hospital i decide to work.

    The hospital with the greatest need is paying $40/hr and i am going to try to neogotiate to get the $42/hr rate. I am new to agency nursing. :uhoh21:

    And i don't understand how this is indenpendent contracting?? I would still have to get my pay from the agency. I will also need to file 1099 .

    They also asked if i am interested in a contract with a hospital and explained that i would get paid less and would not be an independent contractor. I am not interested in that because some weeks i dont want to work 3- 12 hours shifts so i like that i can do 1 shift a week or 4 shifts.

    I am a bit confused about being a per diem independent contractor--Can someone shed some light please

    Oh they do provide workers comp and liability insurance--I already have my own benefits inc. mal practice insurance

    Thanks for the replies in advance!!:spin:
  2. Visit Chica_bella813 profile page

    About Chica_bella813

    Joined: Dec '07; Posts: 253; Likes: 117
    Specialty: 8 year(s) of experience in ICU/CCU/Oncology/CSU


  3. by   RN1989
    If you are working with an agency then you shouldn't be considered an independent contractor. They should be giving you a W2 and you would file a normal return.

    I think they are using "independent contractor" to give you the feeling that you have more control over your schedule. When you schedule with the agency you tell them date/shift/hospital and if really picky which unit. If you are only willing to work one unit then you are more apt to get your shift cancelled. Often the hospitals can't use you in ICU but would prefer to have you work there on the floor than have a med/surg nurse work. When you make your own schedule you also take responsibility for being available at other days and times than you want to be in order to get work. There are many times that I started out scheduling Mon, Tues, and Wed but got cancelled all those days and had to put down to work Thurs, and Fri of that week and still didn't get to work. If you are the sole provider then you have to have enough savings to pay bills when you get cancelled. Cancelling is a way of life during low census and holidays when the regular staff like to get OT.

    When you take a contract you are guaranteed work. The hospital will cancel its own staff and let you work because they would have to pay you anyway. The tradeoff is that you get put down on their written schedule and have to abide by their set schedule with little or no say. When you work "agency" without a contract you can take or leave a shift but you have to remember that you may or may not get another shift that week and could go without a paycheck.

    Agency nurses are frequently dumped on and treated badly - that is if the staff even acknowledge your presence at all. You are expected to walk into the hospital and function with little or no orientation. They often expect you to be able to retrieve labs from the computers and use the computer charting system without having used it before. You will often get the worst pts - the most complex or the most mentally challenging because the staff is sick of dealing with the crazy ones and their families.

    Do not believe the agency when they say that you will get your shifts no problem. Lots of people fall for this and have a rude awakening when they get cancelled for weeks at a time and can't pay their bills. And the pickier you are about where and when you want to work, the more limited the available shifts become.
  4. by   Chica_bella813
    Thank you so much for your reply!! This has really helped--I have been offered another position else where away from the bedside at a teaching hospital and I am going to take that position!! I am going to use the agency job to keep to continue to enhance my bedside care. I hope this plan works out for me!!

    Thanks once again

    God Bless--Happy Holidays!!!